HUD Posts Lead-Base Paint Hazard Reduction Grant NOFA

On June 19, HUD posted a Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for federally recognized Native American tribal governments, city or county townships, county governments, state governments, and special district governments for its Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction program. The purpose of the grant is to help eligible entities undertake “comprehensive programs to identify and control lead-based paint hazards in eligible privately-owned rental or owner-occupied housing populations.” Continue reading

HUD Seeks Comments on Disparate Impact

On Wednesday, June 20, HUD will formally publish their Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking  (ANPR) titled, “Reconsideration of HUD’s Implementation of the Fair Housing Act’s Disparate Impact Standard.” HUD is seeking comment on whether they should reopen the rule based on the Supreme Court’s ruling in the 2015 Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs versus the Inclusive Communities Project, Inc (Inclusive Communities) and public feedback relating to HUD’s regulatory reform efforts. Comments are due 60 days after the ANPR is published on June 20th. HUD announced their plan to reexamine the Disparate Impact Final Rule in a press release on May 10th.

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HUD Voucher NOFAs extended

NAHRO members recently emailed me to let me know that HUD has extended two of their voucher NOFA deadlines. According to information posted on HUD’s Public and Indian Housing website the following voucher Notice of Funding Availability (NOFAs) have extended deadlines:

  • New 2017 Mainstream Voucher Program Deadline – June 20, 2018; and
  • New Family Unification Program NOFA for Fiscal Years 2017 and 2018 Deadline – July 26, 2018.

Additionally, the new deadline for joining ConnectHomeUSA is June 29th, 2018.

Final Round of Opportunity Zones Approved

On April 14, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced the final round of designated Opportunity Zones in 4 additional states. Established by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, Congress created the new community development program that encourages long-term investments in low-income urban and rural communities. The Opportunity Zone Program provides tax incentives for investors to re-invest unrealized capital gains into Opportunity Funds. Opportunity Funds are private sector investment vehicles that invest at least 90 percent of their capital in Opportunity Zones. This new program has the potential to be an important, viable program for housing and community development agencies.

According to the Department of the Treasury, nearly 35 million Americans live in the communities designated as Opportunity Zones, and designated census tracts  had an average poverty rate of over 32 percent.

The final round of submissions were approved for: Florida; Nevada; Pennsylvania; and Utah.

HCV Forecasting Tool Updated

I have received word from a HUD official that the Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Forecasting Tool has been updated. The forecasting tool provides the means to successfully plan and manage a voucher program. The tool has been updated with the final funding numbers for 2018, as well as reconciled 12/31/2017 Restricted Net Position (RNP) numbers for most PHAs.

Additionally, the tool has been updated with several new features:

  • the ability to automatically populate PIC EOP report information;
  • the ability to incorporate different success rates and time from issuance to HAP rates depending on the voucher type;
  • the ability to quickly move information from an old tool to a new tool on the Success Rate Tracker Tab; and
  • a better method for estimating potential offset numbers, based on HUD’s most recent offset-calculating methods.

The tool can be accessed from HUD’s Office of Housing Choice Vouchers webpage.

HUD Publishes New RAD and Section 18 Blend Document

Earlier today, HUD’s Office of Recapitalization sent a RADBlast! email announcing the publication of a Frequently-Asked-Questions (FAQ) document about using HUD’s new demolition and disposition notice–PIH 2018-04 (HA)–in conjunction with the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program.

Specifically, the document answers questions around the provision in the demolition and disposition notice that allows PHAs to convert at least 75 percent of public housing units in a project under RAD–which meet the requirements of the RAD Final Implementation Notice REV-3, H-2017-3–and to convert through disposition up to 25 percent of public housing units within the project to Section 8 project-based voucher assistance.

For those contemplating completing a RAD transaction, this provision is another tool to help finance the deal.

The RAD-Section 18 Blend document can be found at the RAD Resource Desk or here.

HUD Publishes UPCS-V Inspection Protocol Beta

On Monday, June 4, HUD held a UPCS-V Information Technology (IT) Summit. During the session, HUD Inspection Standards and Data for Vouchers (ISDV), presented brief welcoming remarks, an overview of where we are in the protocol development process (29,132 inspections conducted; 170 PHAs trained by April; and 247 participating PHAs), described the protocol; described the decision trees; and provided a technical overview of VEDGA.

During the session, HUD also mentioned that a beta version of the UPCS-V protocol would soon be publicly available. Yesterday, HUD published the beta version of the UPCS-V protocol. Changes in the new version of the protocol are based on three guiding principles: simplicity, transparency, and meeting the objective of national housing policy (i.e., aligning with UPCS). Specific changes include the following:

  • An addition of a glossary;
  • An updated life threatening or emergency (LTE) deficiencies list;
  • Inclusion of carbon monoxide as an inspectable item;
  • Fifty-three percent decrease in length;
  • The alphabetization of the defect dictionary; and
  • An overall reorganization of the document to provide information clearly.

Input and feedback on this version of the protocol can be given at ISDV@hud.gov.

HUD is specifically seeking feedback on the following:

  • Should there be additional terms added to the glossary?
  • Is the order or the protocol logical and does it meet inspector needs?
  • Is there anything missing from the protocol that a novice inspector might need?

The slides from the HUD UPCS-V IT session can be found here.

The beta UPCS-V protocol can be found here.

HUD Begins EnVision Center Demonstration

In a press release earlier today, HUD announced the names of the first 17 communities that will receive EnVision Center designations. EnVision Centers are centralized hubs that serve to support four pillars of self-sufficiency: 1) Economic Empowerment; 2) Educational Advancement; 3) Health and Wellness; and 4) Character and Leadership. The EnVision Centers will partner with “federal agencies, state and local governments, non-profits, faith-based organizations, corporations, public housing authorities, and housing finance agencies” and will leverage these “public-private partnerships” to connect households with services to promote self-sufficiency.

HUD plans to develop tools to track and measure resident outcomes and services to ensure that EnVision Centers are able to monitor progress.

NAHRO’s comments on the EnVision Center Demonstration can be found here.

HUD’s full press release can be found here.

The full list of communities receiving the Envision Center designation can be found by clicking below.

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HUD Posts “Keys to A Successful RAD Conversion” Videos

On Thursday, May 17 and Friday, May 18, HUD held a training on the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program titled “Keys to A Successful RAD Conversion.” The two day long sessions were held in the Brooke-Mondale Auditorium at HUD’s Headquarters. The training was targeted at PHAs that had not yet contemplated, or had not yet started, a RAD transaction and was meant to provide information about the RAD process. The Department had previously promised to post videos of each of the sessions, which they recently did. The session videos can be found below.

Click below to see each session.

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